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Change out: From gas to wood!

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by MathewsOutback, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. MathewsOutback

    MathewsOutback New Member

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    I would like to change out my gas fireplace (see attached photo) to a wood burning fireplace in my basement, just wondering about the rock surround if it will need to be replaced also or if it can be saved? The 6" chimney is already there, it was put in when the house was built.
    Also any good suggestions on brand and model? Thinking of a Osburn Stratford model.
    Thanks

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  2. KaptJaq

    KaptJaq Minister of Fire

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    Is it a full masonry fireplace with a gas insert? What type 6" flue is in there, high temperature stainless steel designed for wood fires? Or was it a low temp flue designed for the gas fireplace?

    If that is a full masonry fireplace with a stone surround it can probably be used. If it is a stone facade on a pre-fab gas zero clearance it might not be re-usable... Compare the requirement for the Osburn Stratford to what is already there. It might be as easy as slide one out and put the other in OR it might require a complete rebuild.

    How close is that wood wall to the fireplace opening? Check clearance to combustibles before your buy a unit.

    Provide more details as to what is there and the people around here can help...

    KaptJaq
  3. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    The existing structure, surrounding framing and 6" chimney may not be rated for wood burning. None of it is probably useable for a wood burner. You will need a s.s. wood burning rated liner for the chimney, or s.s. class A if it runs up through a chase, piping that is in there now for the gas is a no go. You need to be absolutely sure there is no wood or combustible framing behind that stone or around or behind the gas burning insert. You cannot just swap one out for another without being positive there are no combustibles in that area.
  4. MathewsOutback

    MathewsOutback New Member

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    I believe it was designed to be a wood fireplace when it was built, in the picture attached you can see the twin chimney's on the exterior of the house.The one on the right is for a wood fireplace upstairs and the one on the left is for the basement fireplace which is not attached to the exsisting gas unit. The stone front looks to be installed by a masonry. I don't know what the framing is behind the front wall, but i doubt it is non combustible.
    Thanks

    Attached Files:

  5. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    Can you look in that access door to see what is behind the facing inside? Just make positively sure the stack is rated for wood burning. If there are combustibles behind the stone, they will have to come out, and be replaced with non-combustibles like steel studs & durock, etc.if you are looking to put stone back up. Curious what that access door is for? How open inside that chase is it?
  6. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    Looks to me that the original design may have included a wood burning ZC box. They may have tried it & found that the basement location led to chimney smells when the upstairs unit was burned, so they switched to a gas DV unit, blocked off the ZC chimney... The Trapezoidal DV cap is visible on the outside wall to the lower right. If you plan on burning an EPA rated ZC fireplace down there, you're probably gonna hafta trash the stone & the ZC venting & start from scratch. You may have issues with that unit as well, based on the pressure planes of the house.
  7. rideau

    rideau Minister of Fire

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    Don't know if you are changing out because of cost of gas or need for more heat. Maybe look at Woodstock's gas stoves? If you need more heat, that might solve your problem.
  8. mellow

    mellow Resident Stove Connoisseur

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    Looks like a nice spot to install a free standing corner stove, you will have to run new chimney and rip out the existing ZC fireplace, might be able to salvage the rock to put on the wall behind the stove or use for the hearth?

    You will more than likely need an Outside air kit with it being a lower level and tight construction.
  9. MathewsOutback

    MathewsOutback New Member

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    The excess door on the left in the second picture is for an inside wood storage area (see member picture-area on the right) It is lined with stone so I can not see what is behind the wall.
  10. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    With all that, maybe was originally set up for wood. Is the stone real, or veneer? Your going to somehow be sure that there is no combustibles around the firebox anywhere.
  11. Coog

    Coog Member

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    That looks like an RSF Opel in your avatar. Is that what it is? I changed out my gas fireplace (HeatnGlo Cerona) in our living room with a Quadrafire 7100. I am not going to lie, it was tough. I spent months on this website and others trying to find something that would work before I settled on the 7100.

    It is not impossible to re-due the masonry but getting the mortar to match up is an art form. I ended up pulling the gas unit out from the back. That was tough since the basement stairs are behind the fireplace. Just depends how bad you want it. If my wife would have let me, I would have installed a freestanding stove. More radiant heat, less/no fan.

    I know people fall in love with the looks of the ZC fireplaces, and don't get me wrong they are effective heaters, but nothing is like a free stander. Go that direction if you can.
  12. MathewsOutback

    MathewsOutback New Member

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    It is a RSF Opel, I wish I had one downstairs instead of the gas, We love the RSF, it heats our whole upstairs.
    Thanks for all the information all, looks as if I will need to rip out the whole wall and redo.
  13. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Get some eyeballs on location to determine exactly what is in there. Or find the nameplate and let us know what it is. If it is a gas unit set in a wood fireplace (or a gas log set) you may be halfway there. If it is a dedicated gas fireplace, then a tearout would be required for replacement. Is this propane or natural gas?
  14. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    It pretty much HAS to be a gas fireplace, BG. The Trap caps aren't used for any inserts that I know of.
  15. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I defer to your way greater knowledge of gas Daksy. What is a trap cap?
  16. DAKSY

    DAKSY Patriot Guard Rider Staff Member

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    Hey, BG...It refers to the actual Trapezoidal shape (if you look at it from the side)...

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